View Full Version : Harris: Older Hampton wiser, still effective

01-22-2009, 02:37 AM
Harris: Older Hampton wiser, still effective

Thursday, January 22, 2009

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsbu ... 08233.html (http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_608233.html)

Casey Hampton said he had an ok season -- little o, little k.

That's opposed to a typical season for Hampton, who appeared in four Pro Bowls in his first seven NFL seasons, including three consecutive prior to this year.

Hampton didn't make the Pro Bowl this year. But he is going to the Super Bowl for the second time in his career. And he's wiser from the experience.

"In this defense, you've got to play above the neck," Hampton said Wednesday prior to the Steelers' first practice for the Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII on Feb. 1.

Hampton spoke to reporters about playing with a painful groin injury that limited his mobility and performance. He also re-visited a painful memory -- coach Mike Tomlin holding him out of the early part of preseason because of a lack of conditioning.

Before this season, Hampton, who missed three games because of the injury, had never really played in pain before. And he certainly had never been made an example of in front of the entire team.

Hampton could have gone either way, and the Steelers' defense along with him.

"No," Hampton said when asked if his banishment could have divided the team, "because at the end of the day, he's the coach.

"I think the main thing (is) that happening to me and my temamates knowing me, I think that was the bigger thing. I think if it was a guy who wasn't a good player or something like that, it probably could have been different."

As for his relationship with Tomlin, Hampton said it's one of mutual respect.

"I don't have no problems," he said. "I told him I wasn't happy with it, and I let that be known. We're both grown men, we disagree on certain things. I told him my piece, he told me his piece, and it was what it was."

Playing hurt was a new and strange experience for Hampton, who had missed a total of 12 games because of injury prior to this year.

"This was the first year I really played through injuries the way I did, where you can't go 100 percent because you feel like you're going to pop your groin," said Hampton, who suffered the injury against the Philadelphia Eagles in September. "The injury definitely made the season harder, because I couldn't do the things I'm capable of doing."

Being injured is what led Hampton to play football this season with his head, as well as his heart.

"When you get older, you ain't as fast as you used to be," said Hampton, 31. "You don't react as quickly. You can't just play with your physical ability.

"We've got a lot of veteran guys. We don't have a guy (on the defensive line) that's been in the league less than five years. You have to know where the ball's going. Being older helped me out. Seeing a lot of things I had seen before helped me out."

01-22-2009, 02:48 AM
"When you get older, you ain't as fast as you used to be," said Hampton, 31.

Haha!! No Casey, it's not age that's slowing you down...


It's the extra 50 lbs that slow you down!! :D

01-22-2009, 02:57 AM
:lol: :lol: that's cold man but funny

01-22-2009, 10:58 AM
Hampton? I thought we cut him in the pre season for showing up overweight.

OH, wait....thats only what everybody was saying we should do. :roll: :lol: